Score: 95/100 (9.5 out of 10)
Marky the Magnificent Fairy by Cynthia Kern Obrien put huge smiles on our faces. It made us happy. It made us so, so happy. It can't be understated. This beautiful, simple, heartwarming children's book was exactly what we needed to read at exactly the right time.
We've read so many LONG, DARK, DEPRESSING, overly-complicated books lately. It is exhausting. It's like running a triathlon. The reader has to know so much and do so much just to be “into” the story. Making a point and telling a good story doesn't need to be long, dark, depressing, complicated, and meandering. It can really be like this book: short, simple, and good in the areas that matter—heart and soul.
That might be what we love about this book the most. You can really feel that it has a heart and soul. It comes from a place of love and passion. You can really tell that the author understands children and the insecurities, anxieties, and other challenges they go through. Remember, children often feel smaller, weaker, less smart, and less capable than adults do. They often compare themselves to their peers, and their apparent inadequacies stick out to them like a sore thumb. The world is huge and they are small. It is full of so many different people, and it is easy for a child to feel lost in the mix. It is easy for a child to feel “lesser than” everyone else around them. It is easy for a child to feel forgotten. However, the truth is that in their little hands, they hold the keys to our future. They have the potential to develop ideas and technologies to better the state of humanity. They have the potential to make the world a better place.
So, with all that said, this book really touched us with its positive, inspirational touch.
The book follows Marky, a little red-haired, freckle-faced, bespectacled fairy with a wing that's smaller than the other one. Because of this, she is disabled and unable to fly like the other fairies. Some of the woodland creatures point out how different and strange she is. However, what Marky eventually realizes is that she is actually UNIQUE, SPECIAL, AND MAGNIFICENT. Marky is a dreamer—like almost everyone in our organization is—and she has a passion that some of the other fairies and creatures don't have: a love for designing and making clothes.
Think about it: maybe if she could fly, she might've been more focused on that rather than doing or making something NEW! It's a really interesting way of looking at the situation. It's a glass half-full mentality.
The book doesn't only showcase Marky, it also shows us many of the other unique, special, and magnificent people like Nixie, a deaf girl who appears to train dogs, and Fancy, a loud girl who happens to be a great singer. There's also JoJo, a disabled boy who dreams of becoming a doctor so that he can help people like himself.
This book does a very good job at providing perspective.
One more unique character is Tomo, who appears to be some sort of caterpillar creature who serves as Marky's loyal friend.
The art, similar to something like Do You Know the One? by Michelle Bentley, may not be the Mona Lisa, but it has something special about it: a very genuine, hand-drawn, hand-colored look and feel. It almost appears to be colored with crayon. It's colorful and very inviting for children.
All in all, we can highly recommend this book!
9.5/10 is our highest rating ever for a children's book held by less than ten other authors!
Check it out on Amazon!